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hello, i am writing a book about a female p.i.
need some help for a plot any suggestions

thank you

Hello Matt:

So you want to write a book. That's great. Unfortunately, I cannot find a plot for you, for if I were to think up a plot, it would be mine, and not yours. Your plot must come from you, or better still, from your characters.

However, I do have a few hints. First, a plot consists of conflict. Without conflict, there is no plot. There are several different kinds of conflict: a person in conflict with nature, with society, with family or friends, with an antagonist, with God or with themselves.

Second, a plot has three parts: the beginning, the middle and the end. In the first part, a situation of conflict is set up. In the middle obstacles are overcome, and in the end comes the resolution, where the hero(ine) either succeeds or fails.

Third, there is a thing called "verisimilitude," which means "the right details." Successful books have this. Have you ever been a PI? If you have never done such work, do you know anyone who has? If you only want to write for yourself or family and/or friends, you needn't worry about it. But if you'd some day like to publish your work, you would be well advised to write what you know. I can't over emphasize the importance of this. You may think you have nothing to write about, but you have what everyone has: your own knowledge. Your own life. You alone of all people know what it is like to be you living in the world of today. People's lives are endlessly interesting to other people. It's only boring if you make it so.

I hope this has helped. If it has, a nice rating would be greatly appreciated. I am proud of my "straight 10" rating over 185+ questions.

And good luck with your book!  

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Susan Rand


I can answer questions about the elements of fiction and non-fiction writing: how to get started, writing techniques, re-writing, etc. I will NOT write for you, do critiques except from my website at, or give you ideas. I will not answer home-or-schoolwork questions in any category. If English is your second language, please say so, and I will make an exception. Please submit no more than one or two questions at once, as I tend to go into detail in my answers.


I wrote my first book in 1957 and have been writing and studying writing since. I have a BA in Written Communications, and have taught writing both privately and through adult education for 15 years. Have also edited (fiction books) for an online publisher and edited/wrote more than 100 articles for a teen sex education site. Currently writing web content and mentoring beginning writers.

BA degree in Written Communication

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